Like most of the world, the United States is attempting to overcome both the COVID-19 pandemic and a deep recession caused by the resulting government-ordered shutdown. At annual rates, the U.S. economy shrank by 5 percent in the first quarter of 2020 and in the second quarter just ending, it could contract by 40 percent — the steepest decline since the Great Depression.

Moreover, tens of millions of workers have lost their jobs, causing the unemployment rate to soar to a post-Great Depression high of 14.7 percent in April. And although 70 percent of those laid off say they expect to be recalled to their jobs, not all will be, because many firms will fold, relocate or reorganize.